Saturday, December 29, 2007


Readymechs are free, flatpack toys for you to print and build. They are designed to fit on an 8.5"x11" page and printed with any printer. You’ll need double-sided tape, thick matte paper, and 10-15 minutes for build time.

Source :

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Cardboard Dreams

"Cardboard Furniture is the latest thing for home and temporary office use", 1930, Soibelman Syndicate

Bauhaus Cathedral DIY

Lyonel Feininger Cathedral, woodcut,
Cover of 1st manifesto of Bauhaus Weimar, 1919

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Wo bist Du, Santa Claus ?

Sorrow Letters for the Disappearance of Santa Claus
Wood, plywood, fabric, Cotton
Dimensions variable
kostis velonis

See you in Aloha

Vienna, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

In Present Tense

Dimitris Foutris

In today’s globalized reality of expanding networks of artistic production, exhibitions with national or geographic orientation are being re-defined; the challenge in an exhibition of young Greek artists –the object of which is primarily to bring out the queries posed by their artistic research– is to detect their position in a mutating local and world-wide reality.

Maria Antelman

The planning of the exhibition In Present Tense was from the outset oriented in a spirit of openness and exploration. In its two years of preparation, a wide and thorough research was undertaken into the work of Greek artists born after 1965. In this framework, a considerable amount of material was gathered on Greek artists of the younger generation, with the aim of achieving an approach as comprehensive as possible to the practices and directions of contemporary Greek artistic production. The selection of the year 1965 –besides serving the purpose of delimiting the extent of the research– at the same time determined the time-span for the study of Greek artists’ creative activity approximately within the foregoing decade.

Christodoulos Panayiotou

It could be maintained that the span from the mid-90s to this day is marked by a series of changes1, such as the institution and activation of two state museums of contemporary art, the organization of wide-scale international exhibitions, and other shows that focused exclusively on the work of young Greek artists.
The scope of the research comprised a study of the work of this new generation in relation to contemporary international artistic concerns, on issues such as globalization, mass media, multi-culturalism, new technologies and communication potential, setting a series of questions: in what manner and to what extent is the work of the younger Greek artists in discourse with the international, socio-political realities of our day? What is their critical relation to local culture and the modern information society? What place, at the dawning of the 21st century, does their artistic production hold in the framework of contemporary realizations and practices?

Dora Economou

From this viewpoint, the selection of the artists for the exhibition was made on the basis of a combination of criteria shaped by the process of the research itself. The fundamental criterion was the critical stance of the artists toward vital contemporary issues and artistic concerns, such as the social role of architecture, the new conditions of communications in the art production, the re-negotiation of history of art, through works that constitute new aesthetic and conceptual propositions. A further significant criterion was the entirety of each artist’s research and activity. Thereupon the selection comprises of artists with a career extending over a number of years, with a defined style while at the same time includes younger ones recently beginning to emerge.


The exhibition, without being exhaustive, investigates essential proposals and tendencies of contemporary Greek artistic creation, through the work of 34 artists. It includes new proposals, made especially for the exhibition as well as older works selected in close collaboration with the artists. These works are collected in an openly structured presentation permitting the creation of a field of relations tracing the emerging and the already formed directions, the particular singularities and the collective tendencies and the intimated future orientations. Through the dialogue created between the works, the distinguishing features appear to co-exist, converge, conflict and co-relate thus bringing out the dynamics of contemporary art.

Panos Kokkinias

This nomadic generation of young Greek artists moves between Greece and international centres aiming at the creation and presentation of their work. They nonetheless mostly maintain strong ties with Greece and its local cultural organizations. The artists of the exhibition participate in diverse networks of artistic production.2 Beyond their common past and common roots, these artists are connected amongst themselves by the constant dialectic procedures of cultural exchanges and dialogue in which they are subsumed. In the framework of the contemporary information culture, new technological and socio-political developments, the artists evolve in a field between the local and the global, wherein traditional definitions of national and European identity –and their correlations– are re-determined. In a transnational world where multiple identities coexist, as Βruno Latour puts it, «labels can no longer be safely positioned along the former scale, stretching, by successive extensions, from the most local to the most universal. Instead of subtracting one another, conflicting identities keep being added. And yet they remain in conflict and thus have to be sorted out, since no one can belong to all of them at once…»3

Alexandros Psychoulis

Bearing these facts in mind, the exhibition traces the issues Greek artists are querying, and their critical stance towards mass culture and its mediums, the social and political dimension of architecture, the re-examination of individual and collective identity and the re-interpretation of the history of art and of history. The fields of research are examined in the framework of international artistic concerns, as also in relation to the broad spectrum of local social and cultural developments in the foregoing decade.

Angelo Plessas

Young Greek artists draw from an immense reservoir of signs and elements from the cinema, the Internet, entertainment, advertising and comics. As noted by Boris Groys in his essay The Logic of Equal Rights “The contemporary world of media has emerged as by far the largest and most powerful machine for producing images – vastly more extensive and effective than our contemporary art system. […] What the artist standing in the tradition of the classical avant-garde can do, however, is something quite different: he can make reference to the infinite scope of artistic imagery, within which the range of imagery pertaining to political power, advertising and entertainment represents but a slender share.”4

Vangelis Vlahos

In Greece, in the previous decades, the potential for production and projection of electronic images from modern communication media has been broadening. It is now a commonplace to note that a great number of artists of the younger generation draw material, select and follow a course among the signs of mass culture, adopt and examine the structures and mechanisms of its mediums. But what are the particular terms by which popular culture is translated into the work of the younger generation of artists, and what is their critical examination of it?

Andreas Angelidakis

Information technology and the Internet have emerged as the newer means forming popular culture and altering the form of mass entertainment through the digital and virtual environment. In recent years, the relation has evolved between art and a new area of mass culture: the Internet. The new technological realities constitute for contemporary artists not only a source of inspiration but also a platform for the presentation of their work.

[…] The interest of ever more numerous artists turns to the social and political dimension of architecture. The constantly changing aspect of contemporary metropolises –Athens being no exception– has brought about a plethora of alterations to the way of life and habitation. Changes in urban planning affect the manner in which each citizen perceives his surrounding space and his self within it. In recent years these novel relations, created between subject and urban environment, are ever more the object of study and artistic research. The more general notion of the artistic work as site-specific is analysed by Miwon Kwon in a framework of intra-disciplinary dialogue, combining on the one hand “ideas about art, architecture and urban design, and on the other with theories of the city, social space, and public space.”6

Petros Chrisostomou

An equivalent change-about is noticeable also in the work of the younger Greek artists who distance themselves “from form as such and from construction” and turn to “the relation of body-dwelling-public space.”7 The artists often examine the relation of architecture to history and its effect on today’s reality, researching facets of the private and public built space and its relation to the individual, or focus on matters of architectural aesthetics and functionality, breaking them down to their social and political parameters.
[…] The search for a personal and collective identity has always been a primary concern examined by artists. The search into the complexity of human existence, as well as the relation of man to the social environment continues to concern a younger generation of Greek artists. In an effort to comprehend the realities of a globalized world, the artists seek an identity, a sense of belonging within the place in which they live.
[…] The quest for identity takes on a primarily individual form in the work of the younger generation of Greek artists. They turn into their inner self in a more endoscopic procedure, seeking an incorporation of their selves in society. The work of a significant number of artists of this generation demonstrates their anguished search for self-determination in a contemporary, estranging world. This fractured and fragmented identity of an individual at odds with his environment is strongly apparent in the works of many artists.
[…] Through a sociological prism, the work of the young Greek artists appears to mirror the uncertainties brought about by the changes of modernity.8 Private life, as well as the intimate aspects of individuality, and their alterations at the outset of the new century are found at the core of the discourse of contemporary social science. As mentioned by Richard Jenkins, “the ‘re-contemplative identity of self’ is comprised in the phenomena greeted by certain theoreticians of the social sciences [...] as a typical characteristic of the contemporary era”.9
[…] A significant number of the participating artists places at the centre of their research the reinterpretation of the history of art and of history in its social components, as well as their re-inscription in the present. History and history of art are not abstract formations of outdated significance but rather emerge as essential factors giving meaning to the present. According to Walter Benjamin, “history is the object of a construction whose place is formed, not in homogenous and empty time, but in that which is fulfilled by the here-and-now.”10 The artists of the exhibition focus on arbitrary approaches, personal interpretations of the past and subjective perceptions of historical reality; to the prevailing construction of history they contrast a multitude of non-aligned narratives and histories.11
[…] The tendencies and the directions that have been delved into do not constitute an attempt to classify the artists in categories but instead operate as axes upon which to base research for reading their works and as an approach to their artistic thought. The exhibition In Present Tense is a meditation on contemporary artistic reality and an attempt to look into the present through a historical continuity. Bearing in mind that “there is no simply now: every present is nonsynchronous, a mix of different times”12, the exhibition aspires to infiltrate the present, the ‘present tense’, placing it in an open framework of critical discourse.

Tina Pandi, Stamatis Schizakis, Daphne Vitali
(extract of the curators’ text from the catalogue)

1. To be more specific, mention should be made of the founding of the National Museum of Contemporary Art in 1997 and its commencement of operation in 2000, making up for a long-standing deficiency in the area of such establishments, as well as the concurrent institution of the State Museum of Contemporary Art. There is also the housing of the DESTE Foundation in a permanent exhibition space in 1998, and the institution of the Athens School of Fine Arts’ exhibition space The Factory in 1995.
2. Thirteen of the artists of the exhibition are living and active in international centres in Europe and the U.S. such as London, Berlin, Amsterdam, Paris and New York. The artists study at the Fine Arts schools of these centres, developing collaboration with agencies, institutions and galleries.
3. Βruno Latour, “On the difficulty of being glocal”, Art-e-fact,
4. Boris Groys, “The Logic of Equal Rights”, Synopsis 3. Testimonies: Between Fiction and Reality, National Museum of Contemporary Art, edited by Anna Kafetsi, Athens 2003, p. 21.
5. Nikolas Sevastakis points out the transformation of cultural logic determining the Media in Greece: “From the end of the 1980s, here too powerful codes of novelty are formed […]. The new codes evolve morphologically also from the angle of the content at the base of the system of the Media, publicity and commercial cultural sphere, indicating model images of self and the good life, proposing concrete anthropological models and existentialist desiderata.” Nikolas Sevastakis, Kinotopi Hora, Savvalas Editions, Athens 2004, p. 29.
6. Miwon Kwon, One Place after Another: Site-Specific Art and Locational Identity, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2002, pp. 2-3.
7. Yorgos Tzirtzilakis, «Program from a territorial workshop of the present», GAP#1, January-February 2005.
8. Richard Jenkins mentions the following dramatic changes: re-determination of labour and of family, mobility of social classes and positions, migration, […] the fresh drawing of borders. (Richard Jenkins, Social Identity, Savvalas Editions, Athens 2007, p. 37.)
9. Richard Jenkins, Social Identity, Savvalas Editions, Athens 2007, p. 38.
10. Walter Benjamin in Μichael Löwy, Walter Benjamin: Prominima Kindinou, Plethron, Athens 2004, p. 154.
11. Remaking History, Discussions in Contemporary Art and Culture, edited by Barbara Kruger and Phil Mariani, Dia Art Foundation, The New Press, New York 1989, p. 9.
12. Hal Foster, “Whatever happened to post-modernism?”, The Return of the Real: Art and Theory at the End of the Century, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1996, p. 207.

Participated artists

Emi Avora
Andreas Angelidakis
Maria Antelman
Athanasios Argianas
Petros Chrisostomou
Katerina Christidi
Christina Dimitriadis
Dora Economou
Makis Faros
Dimitris Foutris
George Drivas George Drivas
Alexandros Georgiou
Vangelis Gokas
Eleni Kamma
Dionisis Kavallieratos
Panos Kokkinias
Yannis Kontaratos
DeAnna Maganias
Christodoulos Panayiotou
Nina Papaconstantinou
Ilias Papailiakis
Angelo Plessas
Mantalina Psoma
Alexandros Psychoulis
Yorgos Sapountzis
Vassiliea Stylianidou
Lina Theodorou
Iris Touliatou
Stefanos Tsivopoulos
Kostis Velonis
Vangelis Vlahos
Yiorgis Yerolymbos

Curated By Tina Pandi, Stamatis Schizakis, Daphne Vitali

"COOP HIMMELB(L)AU. Beyond the Blue"

In the center of the show is a spatial installation developed especially for the MAK, which palpably illustrates the continuity and variety of architectural articulation in the work of COOP HIMMELB(L)AU. An oversized model table features about 170 architectural models of about 80 selected and exemplary international projects which in their totality are reminiscent of a grown urban fabric.

MAK Exhibition, Vienna, Austria
E December 11, 2007 - May 11, 2008

Commercial Folklore in Sarajevo

The Prohibition of the Death's- head Moth

Jan Fabre, Alpha Delta Gallery, Athens

"The last thing man becomes addicted to, after all , is life itself.
Within this ultimate challenge, an artist
does not create for an audience or for critics,
but for time, in a battle against mortality."

Jan Hoet

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jewish Cowgirls

The Representation of Jewish nationality in America through LP covers

see also

Friday, December 7, 2007

Hotel Theory

A Review of Hotel Theory by Wayne Koestenbaum

CENTRAL QUESTION: Are hotels for business trips and vacationing or are they spaces for the overturning of all bourgeois values?

The heroes of Wayne Koestenbaum’s books don’t abide by contemporary time. In Moira Orfei in Aigues-Mortes (2004), Theo Mangrove fills up twenty-five notebooks in his aging Mechanical Street home, lamenting previous nervous breakdowns, practicing obscure piano preludes, screwing the hustlers of the “Water District,” and fretting over a potential concert with a renowned circus artist. In Andy Warhol (2001), the pop artist is pictured as a savorer of stillness. His films, shot at sound speed (twenty-four frames per second) and projected at silent (eighteen frames), “take longer to show than they took to make.” This viscous effect, Koestenbaum writes, invites the viewer into a space of “almost unbearable intimacy,” “leisure,” and “contemplation.”
Hotel Theory, Koestenbaum’s latest offering, is the grand summation of his lingering thought. Less hard theory than a string of ruminations inspired by books, films, and artworks that have taken the hotel as their subject, it is the author’s most sustained effort at bringing delays and pauses to the fore. Running alongside it, Koestenbaum has planted his own novel, Hotel Women, a pulpy fling with an Oulipian gambit—it lacks the articles a, an, and the. Things are fun here, but the accommodations at Hotel Theory are more gracious, the guests more inviting. Walter Benjamin, Ava Gardner, and Martin Kippenberger all stop by, and Koestenbaum uses their visits as fodder for his own travels. He checks in to “Hotel Lautréamont” to read a John Ashbery poem, which unfolds into a reflection on the “pleasures of passivity, of being liked, of being hosted, of being wind-touched.” The hotel is at once an emblem of and a preserve for such pleasures. It is also a site where Koestenbaum produces perfectly parsed prose. Each line in Hotel Theory is sushi-grade: raw, fresh, placed just so.
It is an odd kind of traveler, however, who crosses the world never to leave his hotel room. Despite its various amenities, the hotel is also a maze of “privacy, braindeadness, aphonia, sadness, ineffability” and “a space for depression.” Hotels are dialectical places, binding together death and aliveness. Koestenbaum insists that we swallow both, however; the hotel harbors pleasures too seldom found elsewhere. It not only offers “pleasures of anonymity” but facilitates a “quest to imagine a vocation of pleasure, and to find value in the tiny, the out-of-date, and the wrong.” Though Koestenbaum insists on the hotel’s “sluttish core,” these delights are not as carnal as one might expect; more pronounced is a certain erotics of erudition. There is gratification taken here in every proper name written and every detail given, a satisfaction received from the long process of self-cultivation (and self-forgetting). Devoid of any narrative or progression, Hotel Theory is—and I mean this as a compliment—a kind of hard-core navel-gazing, the kind one does on a taut queen-size bed after having showered and raided the minibar.
Despite its evident appeals, Koestenbaum’s brand of leisure has its blind spots, and the author admits as much: “But I haven’t considered the viewpoint of hotel maids,” he writes toward the book’s conclusion. “That’s a flaw in my system, a blind spot. I’m making invisible the labor behind a hotel’s maintenance.” A disciplinarian might argue that such an omission troubles much of the author’s theory, that it haunts his “dreams of escape and social detachment.” The hotel, however, serves a purpose: it is a space of hospitality, a place of respite, a point apart. It might also be our last resort.

Format: 192 pp., paperback; Size: 8-2/3" x 6-1/2"; Price: $16.00; Publisher: Soft Skull Press; Editor: Richard Nash; Print run: 2,500; Book design: Michael Greenblatt and Jessica Wexler; Number of hotels author stayed in during the writing of this book: thirty-seven; Author’s favorite hotel: the Hotel Nêgresco in Nice, France (though he’s never stayed there); Author’s favorite minibar snack: sparkling mineral water; Author’s favorite hotel room amenity: lit vanity mirrors that magnify the face and assist precise shaving; Representative sentence: “Remember: you can escape maternal influence by checking in to a hotel”

Alex Kitnick

Believer, Vol. 5, No. 8

Thursday, December 6, 2007


Linda Connor, 1979

Η έννοια της σκιάς ως χρήση
Αναζητήστε στην πόλη αυτοσχέδια στέγαστρα που αποτελούν ευρεσιτεχνίες κάτοικων, είναι συνήθως από εφήμερα υλικά και συνήθως έχουν επινοηθεί ως προεκτάσεις σε κτίρια. Παρατηρήστε τη χρήση τους (μπαλκονι,σπιτι ζώου, προσωρινή κατοικία αστέγου, προέκταση καταστήματος κ.λ.π.) φωτογραφήστε τα και διαλέξτε αυτό που σας ενδιαφέρει περισσότερο. Παρουσιάστε τους λογούς της επιλογή σας μέσα από μια 5 λεπτή εισαγωγή. Πως μπορείτε να μιλήσετε για την έννοια τη σκιάς σε αυτή την άσκηση. Σκιά ως κατάλυμα, ως στέγαση, ως ξεκούραση, ως διάλειμμα, ως κοινωνικοποίηση, ως προστασία.

Η έννοια της σκιάς ως προέκταση της φαντασίας
Τα αντικείμενα αντανακλούν σκιές. Επιλέξτε κάποια αντικείμενα και προσπαθήστε να αντιγράψετε τη σκιά τους σε μια επίπεδη επιφάνεια με τέτοιο τρόπο ώστε να φανερώνεται κάποιο κτίσμα. Δημιουργήστε δέκα διαφορετικά σχεδία. Χρησιμοποιώντας μια φορητή φωτιστική πηγή θα αποδώσετε τη σκιά που θέλετε.

Eva Rothchild, Midnight, 2002

Πως μπορεί να αποδοθεί ο χρόνος σε ένα κτίριο?
Παρατηρήστε ένα αντικείμενο. Φτιάξτε μια χωρική κατασκευή και ορίστε τη σκιά σε σχέση με τις λειτουργιές του υπόλοιπου χώρου. Nα επινοηθεί η θέση της και η χρήση της σε σχέση με τα υπόλοιπα μέρη της κατασκευής.

Giorgio de Chirico Mystery and Melancholy of a Street, 1914

Sunday, December 2, 2007

What Does your Soul Look Like

Storage House,Paiania, 2007

Bound to the Brotherhood

wood, cloth, metal
33 cm x 8 cm x 8 cm

Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Education of the Child

God's Food

There were once upon a time two sisters, one of whom had no children and was rich,
and the other had five and was a widow, and so poor that she no longer had food enough to satisfy herself and her children. In her need, therefore, she went to her sister, and said, "My children and I are suffering the greatest hunger; thou art rich, give me a mouthful of bread." The very rich sister was as hard as a stone, and said, "I myself have nothing in the house," and drove away the poor creature with harsh words. After some time the husband of the rich sister came home, and was just going to cut himself a piece of bread,but when he made the first cut into the loaf, out flowed red blood. When the woman saw that she was terrified and told him what had occurred. He hurried away to help the widow and her children, but when he entered her room, he found her praying. She had her two youngest childrenin her arms, and the three eldest were lying dead. He offered her food, but she answered, "For earthly food have we no longer any desire. God has already satisfied the hunger of three of us, and he will hearken to our supplications likewise." Scarcely had she uttered these words than the two little ones drew their last breath,whereupon her heart broke, and she sank down dead.

Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm